Inveneo Testing Criteria Overview

Inveneo’s testing criteria are designed around common scenarios we design around in developing countries. These projects are often in remote rural areas and in challenging environments: hot, humid, dusty logistical challenges. Many are not connected to a power grid and use solar power or generators. Local administrators often have only very basic computer and network knowledge… With that in mind we test products to ensure they’re well suited for both initial IT deployment and long-term sustainability.

The criteria we generally test for are:

Value

Value

We compare the product to similarly-priced models on the basis of core specifications and additional functionality. Price is an important consideration: we’re not looking for enterprise-level capacity that will go unused, but the cheapest option isn’t generally the best. We also look for good reviews and high adoption rates, both indicators of long-term reliability and user satisfaction.

Value

Performance

We look for products that match our specifications as nearly as possible and try to purchase hardware that neither under- nor over-performs. Products must meet our requirements for number of users and throughput and perform as expected under the stress of a typical day’s use.

Value

Power

When testing power consumption, lower is better. We test average idle, low, normal and peak usage, record the complete power consumption profile and check to see how the device functions over time. This includes checking small details, like if the device keeps fans running constantly.

Value

Ruggedness / Durability

All of the devices are put to specific tests around the situations we expect them to be exposed to. Movement, dropping and exposure to high temperature are all tested. We also consider the number of moving parts which can have an impact on the long-term reliability of equipment in the field.

Value

Reliability / Consistency

Once we’ve concluded that the device meets our requirements, we measure how consistently it performs. Is it buggy or does it simply do what you expect it to? If the power goes out temporarily, does the machine come back up or does it generate errors? If it does fail, how easy is it to fix? Unpredictability is generally avoided.

Value

Admin / User Experience

User Experience covers any time that a user has to interact with the equipment. How intuitive is the experience? Are users able to perform their desired tasks based on what they’re choosing and clicking? How often do they have to refer to the manual to complete tasks?

Value

Manufacturer Support

No product is perfect, which makes it important to have a manufacturer who stands behind their product. Warrantee types and the process involved are important. Does the manufacturer have a global presence? Are there local distributors or vendors? Will working with the product in the long run be easy or a chore?

Value

Standalone / Dependencies

Does the product require anything additional to function? Most of the products we recommend are designed as part of a network, which means they’re always connected and dependent. What we look for is product-specific dependencies like hardware compatibility, protocols or power needs.

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